Mcafee family protection for mac review

Instead of going to multiple pages for different content types, you simply select the child's age. Family Safety then chooses the appropriate maximum rating for apps, movies, TV shows, and games. Email and Instant Messaging For the very youngest kids, email tracking and control isn't a worry unless you're using Microsoft Family Safety, which requires an email account for every child.

Even older kids are more likely to communicate via social media, instant messaging, or text. It also has the unusual ability to limit the child's email contacts to a parent-approved list. That last feature is just an extension of content filtering, so it probably works fine. This feature in particular is showing its age. Qustodio keeps a full timeline of your children's Facebook activity. McAfee's social network monitoring is both broader and more limited. For each child, you define a number of personal data items that probably shouldn't be posted on social media.

Street address, home phone, cell phone, and school name are available by default. You can add other data items if desired. And you can check boxes to save sexually suggestive or profane posts. This feature applies to all posts on any websites, not just specific social media sites.

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In testing, though, I couldn't see this feature working at all. Looking back at my earlier review, it appears I had the same problem, though at the time it was blamed on Windows XP.


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Other Settings If your child starts wildly trying to access inappropriate content, McAfee can send you an instant alert. You can choose three levels of sensitivity, and have alerts sent to one or more email addresses, or texted to one or more phone numbers. On receiving an alert, parents might choose to log into the online console and lock down access even further. Instant alerts aside, parents can also choose to receive a daily or weekly summary of each child's activity.

On the advanced settings tab, there's an option to turn off content filtering for HTTPS websites; don't do that! You can enhance McAfee's forced Safe Search by blocking any search that includes profanity, sexual language, or a parent-defined collection of keywords. In testing, I couldn't make this feature work. I defined "fnord" as a banned keyword for one child account, but had no trouble searching the phrase "fear the fnord.

A quick look at McAfee Family Protection

Buried in this tab are settings for program blocking. This feature blocks all Internet access for specific programs and program types. For example, you can block file sharing, email, and FTP, if you wish. The dated program lists include a number of long-gone programs such as LimeWire and Morpheus. Want to block a custom program?

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You'll have to right-click the notification area icon and find it in the list of programs that have accessed the Web. Activity Reports You'll find a tab for activity reports in the configuration dialog, but no access to the reports themselves. To get at those reports, you'll go once again to the right-click menu of McAfee's icon in the notification area. On the Activity Reports page you can select any use and pick a date range; the default range just covers today.

The websites page reports the number of sites allowed and blocked, lists the top sites visited, and graphs online activity for different times of day. It also reports the child's latest Web searches. You can dig in for a full list of blocked sites and click any of them to see what category triggered the block. Another page lists all games and programs used by the child during the specified period. You might think you could right-click an item in this list to add it to the blocked list; you'd be wrong.

Likewise there's no easy way to block a website from the allowed list or whitelist a site found on the blocked list. Other pages report on video, music, email, IM, and social networking activity. As noted, I didn't find that McAfee actually captured social networking messages that included the too-personal data I specified. Its features were top-notch five years ago; today they're a bit dusty. My McAfee contacts would have preferred that I simply ignore it until the new, shiny version comes out later this year, but I couldn't do that.

Rest assured, when the new edition comes out, it will have my undivided attention.

Knowledge Center

For now, skip this product and instead choose one of our three Editors' Choice products for parental control and monitoring. They are: Bottom Line: Qustodio Parental Control for Android. Norton Family Parental Control for Android. He was present at the formation of the Association of Shareware Professionals, and served on its board of directors. See Full Bio. This newsletter may contain advertising, deals, or affiliate links. Subscribing to a newsletter indicates your consent to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

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